Cooper Intern Profile | Diana Hsieh

Jan. 20, 2021


Diana Hsieh is a graduate student in Hydrology who is working with us through a NASA grant, and her focus is curriculum development and revision. She is specifically tackling our Ecosystem Explorers program, formerly for 3rd grade learners and recently refocused on 5th graders because of changes to the Arizona Science Standards.

Diana (she/her) was born and raised in Ohio and has been with the Cooper Center since August of 2020. Diana is working on curriculum development and revision; specifically our Ecosystem Learning Journey Guide (formerly known as Ecosystem Explorers). Her favorite food is Szechuan cuisine - the spicier the better! - and her favorite desert plant and animal are the saguaro and coyote.

Q. Your focus is on curriculum development and revision - can you share the nature of your work with the Cooper Center?

A. I am working with Cooper Center staff to revise their activity for 5th graders, the ecosystem explorer trail guide. I am also developing new material that will expose the students to NASA’s GRACE satellites.

Q. What in your background and experience led you to the Cooper Center?

A. I am a NASA Space Grant Fellow and was connected through Cooper Center through a UA professor who had her children attend Cooper Center! She recommended I reach out and the rest is history.

Q.  What are you interested in doing professionally and how does your work at Cooper connect with your larger professional goals?

A.I am interested in becoming a hydrologist to protect and conserve our water. Developing curriculum for Cooper Center exposes me to additional research underway and provides my a much needed break from my typical coursework.

Q. Can you bring to light one specific experience or memory from your work at Cooper?  Something funny, or meaningful, or a learning moment for you?

A. Going to Cooper Center to do a field visit was very powerful. With Covid the facility was quiet, but imagining the facilitated chaos that comes with busloads of children exploring, laughing, and learning on site made everything much more real. It was almost like the calm before a storm! I hope to help out with the trips when field trips are safe again.

Q. Anything else you would like to share?

A. The staff at Cooper Center are some of the most motivated and caring individuals! I hope all parents send their children for trips at Cooper Center.